The Fitzpatrick Autosports team is set to contest the 2018 USAC 410ci Indiana Sprint Week with American hot shot Brandon Mattox behind the wheel of the Vic # 2, with the gruelling schedule consisting of seven race meetings in nine days at a number of Indiana’s most competitive bullrings.
Coming off a successful 2017-18 season Australian campaign in Wingless Sprints with driver Travis Millar, which included clinching the Victorian Title, as well as a pleasing sixth-place finish in the in the Australian Championship from 13th, the team is now gearing up to embark on its biggest challenge yet.
“We love the spectacle of Indiana Sprint Week,” enthused Larry Fitzpatrick.
“It attracts some of the best non-wing Sprintcar drivers from throughout America as well as internationally and the racing is always unbelievably close. Any of the 15 or 20 cars can win on any given night. The pre and post-race shenanigans aren’t so bad either!”
Having purchased a brand new custom non-wing DRC chassis, the team then got in touch with Mattox, who was pleased to accept their offer to spearhead Fitzpatrick Autosports’ American campaign.
“Non-wing Sprintcars are huge in Indiana and very few Australians have participated in the USAC Indiana Sprint Week competition. It will be great to see what we can do with Brandon at the helm,” commented Gary Fitzpatrick.
Named the 2010 Midwest Sprint Car Series Rookie of the Year and currently leading the Midwest Sprint Car Series points, the regular front-runner, from Terre Haute in Indiana, is known for his hard-charging but calculated driving style. Currently enjoying a strong 2018 campaign aboard his # 28 DRC, Mattox has registered multiple podium positions at a number of Indiana Sprint Week tracks.
Jumping at the opportunity to fill the driver’s seat aboard the Fitzpatrick Autosports machine, his consistency is sure to bolster the team when he take to the track later this month.
“I can’t thank Fitzpatrick Autosports enough for giving me the opportunity to run with them,” expressed the 32-year-old racer.
“Provided that we can dial the car in on short notice, there’s no reason why we can’t compete with the best of them. Indiana Sprint Week is a tough deal and the team is under no illusions that it won’t be, but we’ll giving it our best and we’re looking forward to seeing where we end up.”
Indiana is well known for its quarter and third-mile speedway tracks for good reason, with many of the venues being high-banked, wide and extremely fast, lending themselves to regular three and four-wide racing. However, round four is set to take place at the famed and historic Terre Haute Action track; a half-mile fairgrounds venue that dates back to 1952.
Regarded by many as the world’s best race track, round two of the Sprint Week will be held at Kokomo Speedway, with the track no doubt going to make for great viewing via the live coverage, which begins at 8:30am AEST on Sunday, July 22 and can be accessed at the following link: www.speedshifttv.com.
While the Fitzpatrick Autosports team has put a lot of effort into making their American racing debut a reality, a big thank you must go to Ron and Kim Kennelly, and Brandon Long, who have been pivotal in terms of laying the groundwork on the other side of the Pacific Ocean.
“None of this would have been possible without Ron, Kim and Brandon,” added Gary.
“Ron and Kim have become very good friends of the family, while Brandon has previously spent time in Australia as crew chief for Victorian racer Luke Nash, which is where we got to know him.
“Each of them have gone above and beyond to make all of this happen and we couldn’t be more grateful for their invaluable support.”
Mattox will make his debut in the Vic # 2 machine on July 13 at Gas City Speedway, followed by a second show at Tri-State Speedway in Haubstadt, Indiana before commencing the seven-round USAC Indiana Sprint Week the following Friday at Plymouth Speedway in Northern Indiana.
Speed Shift TV will be offering live coverage of USAC Indiana Sprint Week, which can be accessed by purchasing a viewing pass via their website at www.speedshifttv.com.
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2018 USAC Indiana Sprint Week Schedule:
Plymouth Speedway (Plymouth)
Kokomo Speedway (Kokomo)
Lawrenceburg Speedway (Lawrenceburg)
Terre Haute Action Track (Terre Haute)
Lincoln Park Speedway (Putnamville)
Bloomington Speedway (Bloomington)
Tri-State Speedway (Haubstadt)